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Joe Litchfield celebrates 18th birthday with European Junior gold

Joe Litchfield ensured his 18th birthday was one to remember as he landed his maiden European Junior title in Hungary.

The Doncaster Dartes swimmer knocked more than half a second off his personal best to land the spoils in a dramatic 200m Individual Medley final.

Just 0.68 seconds separated the top four at the touch, with the English swimmer turning fourth with just 50m to go.

But Litchfield, who won Commonwealth Youth Games silver in this event last year, dug deep to haul his way to the front down the final 50m, coming home in 28.49 to take gold in 2:01.07.

Hungary’s Marton Barta took silver just 0.06 seconds back while Italy’s Lorenzo Glessi (2:01.30) denied Hungary’s Daniel Sos (2:01.75) in the battle for bronze.

Litchfield’s time ducked under his 2:01.88 from the semi-finals while the teenager’s PB from before the Championships stood at 2:03.92 from the 2015 British Summer Championships.

All-English medley quartet win bronze

An all-English girls’ 4x100m Medley Relay quartet closed the session with Great Britain’s fourth medal of day three.

It was a second medal for City of Leeds’ Layla Black, having claimed 200m Breaststroke silver earlier in the session.

Black was joined in the quartet by Woking’s Anna Maine, Plymouth Leander’s Laura Stephens and Ellesmere College Titans swimmer Freya Anderson. The Brits touched in 4:07.03 behind Russia (4:05.85) and Italy (4:06.94).

The result brought a third medal in as many days for Anderson, who won 4x100m Freestyle Relay bronze on day one, and 100m Freestyle gold on day two.

Stephens and Clyne reach 100m Fly final

Stephens was also in individual action on day three, securing a spot in tomorrow’s 100m Butterfly final.

The 17-year old, who was ninth at this year’s senior European Championships in London, clocked 59.73 to progress second fastest.

City of Leeds’ Amelia Clynes made the final fifth fastest on 1:00.21 where she will aim to improve on her silver medal from Dordrecht two years ago.

  • Click here to view results from the 2016 European Junior Swimming Championships in Hungary.

Image credit: A. Masini / Deepbluemedia